House passes bill to boost local cyber crime-fighting


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A bill to provide state and local law enforcement with cybercrime tools and training has passed the House of Representatives.

“Strengthening State and Local Cyber Crime Fighting Act of 2017” (H.R. 1616) — introduced by  Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas, the chairman of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Protection — authorizes the National Computer Forensics Institute (NCFI) in Hoover, Ala.

The NCFI has trained more than 6,250 officials from all 50 states and three U.S. territories in tools and procedures to “dust for ‘digital fingerprints’ and utilize forensics to gather evidence and solve cases,” according to Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, who introduced companion legislation alongside Ranking Member Diane Feinstein in April.

“I’m grateful my bill passed the House to help equip our police, prosecutors and judges to address cybercrime at the state and local level,” said Ratcliffe in a news release. “The strong support it’s already received in the Senate makes me optimistic that we’ll get it all the way to the president’s desk for his signature.”

Text of the bill can be viewed on Ratcliffe’s official website.